I don’t think I would have picked up this book if it hadn’t been so strongly recommended by Tarryn Fisher and her readers on social media. The cover is stunning, but the title is a little… off-putting, to me. It totally makes sense once you are reading it, though.
The book begins with a flashback to when the main character, Beatrice (“Trixie”) is twelve and is told by a fortune teller that the love of her life will die and leave her alone. So we KNOW from the first chapter that something bad will happen. I think this is one of the big page-turning factor: how will this terrible thing come to be? Something I loved about this story is also the family dynamics we are witnessing. Both on Trixie’s side and on Jacob’s side. My own father issues were reflecting on how I felt about theirs. The characters were all flawed in their own ways but that made them more realistic, too.
I highly recommend God-shaped hole, but keep a box of tissues nearby…
About the author
Tiffanie DeBartolo (born November 27, 1970) is an American novelist, filmmaker, co-founder of the independent record label Bright Antenna, and co-founder of The ShineMaker Foundation. Tiffanie has written three novels: God-Shaped Hole, How To Kill a Rock Star, and the upcoming Sorrow, scheduled for release in October 2020. She wrote and directed the film Dream for an Insomniac, featuring Jennifer Aniston, released in 1996. She also penned the text to the graphic novel GRACE: The Jeff Buckley Story, which was released in April 2019.
16 May 2017
"God-Shaped Hole will change you as a reader, writer and human. It is rare books like this one that remind me why I fell in love with the written word." — Colleen Hoover
When I was twelve, a fortune teller told me that my one true love would die young and leave me all alone...
When Beatrice Jordan meets the unpredictable Jacob Grace, the two wild souls become instant allies. Together they discover an escape in each other's creativity and insecurities, while running from secrets they cannot seem to shake — or a fate that could throw them to the ground . . .
This 15th Anniversary reissue of Tiffanie DeBartolo's classic love story introduces a new audience of dreamers to a quintessentially real and raw vision of spirit, and inspires everyone to live — and love — as vividly as possible.
It’s hard for me to currently pick a favourite book from Colleen Hoover. I was skeptical about Confess at first, maybe because of the title. I was afraid it would be a classical and cliché chic-lit book. But I should have known this is not Colleen’s style 😉
This is the story of Auburn, who experienced a tragedy when she was 16 years old. We meet her again five years later. Her heart is broken, but she’s doing her best day-to-day. And then she meets Owen while looking for a job. Owen has an art Studio where he sells his paintings once a month. Their attraction is strong and undeniable but both are hiding secrets that could completely tear them apart.
This book was totally unexpected to me. I loved that we got to read both sides of the story, thanks to alternating chapters. We don’t know the full secrets until pretty far in the book, which I appreciated. The reader does not have to ALWAYS be omniscient 😉
In the book, the artwork plays a big role. I was so pleased that some actual art was included in the book. The artist is Danny O’Connor and the art is breathtaking.
You can buy prints of the book’s artwork on Colleen’s website: right here.
About the author
Colleen Hoover is the #1 New York Times and International bestselling author of multiple novels and novellas. She lives in Texas with her husband and their three boys. She is the founder of The Bookworm Box, a non-profit book subscription service and bookstore in Sulphur Springs, Texas.
Thorndike Press Large Print
9 September 2015
Auburn Reed is determined to rebuild her shattered life and she has no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to become deeply attracted to the studio’s enigmatic artist, Owen Gentry. For once, Auburn takes a chance and puts her heart in control, only to discover that Owen is hiding a huge secret. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything Auburn loves most, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it—but can she do it?
Sometimes, I read books back-to-back that have a common theme without knowing it in advance. Does it happen to you as well? Most of the books I read come from the banQ in Montréal. I see a book I think I’d like and borrow it, or I put a reservation until it’s available. This is how I sometimes end up with books like this. This is my second book by this author, the first one was Georgia Peaches & Other Forbidden Fruits. She is queer herself, so I know that she writes about subjects she actually understands. It’s important to me.
In The meaning of birds, Jessica is our main protagonist. She’s in high school and has been dealing with anger issues for years. They are probably the result of unexpressed grief from her father’s death. Then, enters Vivi. She is passionate about birds, about going to college and lifts Jessica up. Plus, she encourages her to take the doodles Jess’ therapist encouraged her to do to an other level. The book is created with alternating chapters: Now and Then. This is how we get to understand Jessica’s story better. Because in the Now, she is spiralling out of control, lost in her newest grief. How to continue living when the love of your life just died, even though you’re still a teenager? This was very beautifully written and I felt for the characters in general, not only Jess. It’s the kind of story that sticks with you, even when you’re done reading the book.
About the author
Jaye Robin Brown, or JRo to her friends, has been many things in her life– jeweller, mediator, high school art teacher–but is now living the full-time writer life. She lives with her wife, dogs, and horses in a sweet house in the NC woods where she hopes to live happily ever after.
The Meaning of Birds
Jaye Robin Brown
Young Adult Fiction
16 April 2019
“An evocative story of the thrills of first love and the anguish of first loss. This will break you and heal you.”—Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin’ Not to be missed by fans of Nina LaCour and Becky Albertalli, this powerful novel—from the acclaimed author of Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit—paints a poignant portrait of love in the past, grief in the now, and the healing power of art. Before: Jess has always struggled with the fire inside her. But when she meets Vivi, everything changes. As they fall for each other, Vivi helps Jess deal with her anger and pain and encourages her to embrace her artistic talent. And suddenly Jess’s future is a blank canvas, filled with possibilities. After: When Vivi unexpectedly dies, Jess’s perfect world is erased. As she spirals out of control, Jess pushes away everyone around her and throws out her plans for art school. Because art is Vivi and Vivi is gone forever. Right when Jess feels at her lowest, she makes a surprising friend who just might be able to show her a new way to channel her rage, passion, and creativity. But will Jess ever be able to forge a new path for herself without Vivi? A beautiful exploration of first love and first loss, this novel effortlessly weaves together past and present to tell a profound story about how you can become whole again when it seems like you’ve lost the most important part of yourself.
“What you left behind” is the story of Ryden, who became a single father at 17. His girlfriend, Meg, died the day she gave birth to their daughter, Hope. Ryden was not ready to become a Dad, but his Mom (I love her!) is very supportive and does her best to make him connect with his daughter. Ryden dreams of becoming a professional soccer player and to attend UCLA on a soccer scholarship. Juggling being a parent, school, work and practice is a lot. We follow him as he navigates his relationship with his co-worker, the quirky Joni. She does not know anything about his situation and feels like a breath of fresh air in his shattered universe. Ryden is in search of answers: finding his father, who he does not know. Finding diaries that maybe Meg left behind for him to find and that would explain a lot of things. This book was heartbreaking. I felt for Ryden and his difficulties to bond with his daughter. His life took a turn he absolutely did not ask for or saw coming and it’s really hard for him to accept it and to become the father he needs to be. His mother is amazing, by the way.
About the author
Jessica Verdi is an author of young adult novels and children’s books about identity, family, acceptance, and love. After nearly ten years in the NYC theatre world, she got an idea for a novel. That novel was an adult magical realism story, and while it will never see the light of day—nope, don’t ask—it was the book that started her love affair with writing. Now she can’t imagine doing anything else. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her partner Paul and dogs Billie and Gloria.
What You Left Behind
1 August 2015
Seventeen-year-old Ryden's life was changed forever when his girlfriend discovered she was pregnant and stopped chemotherapy, and now, raising Hope with his mother's help and longing for the father he never knew, he meets smart and sexy Jodi and gains a new perspective.